Day Six – September 15, 2012

This morning I leave Waterton and get to see a beautiful sunrise bid me adieu on the next leg of my adventure. It was a cool night last night, but it was warmer than I had thought it might be. Banff may be a rude awakening…

Sunrise in Waterton – Alberta, Canada

Prince of Wales Hotel at sunrise – Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, Alberta, Canada

Holy shit! Fifty dollars for less than half a tank of gas?!?! There were several more like that throughout the day, but I am now sitting in a campground in Banff National Park so it has paid back with dividends aplenty. Another scratch off of my bucket list. I have always wanted to see this place and it is not disappointing at all.

What an absolutely beautiful park, and the drive here was nothing less than spectacular as well. Beautiful, endless praries followed by rugged, jagged peaks. This really makes the Rockies and the Tetons look like the Appalachians. I have seen many mountains, and the only other thing I have seen like this is Alaska. In fact, most of the drive today reminded me quite a lot of the drive from Anchorage to Denali.

Banff National Park – Alberta, Canada

I stopped along the way to get fuel (and I heard banjo music at every fill up) in a town called Longview. Back up the road they had a billboard about “World’s Best Beef Jerky”. The gauntlet had been thrown down with that comment. I had to stop and see for myself. They had homemade Slim Jim pepperoni sticks that were incredible. And yes… the jerky is the best I have ever eaten. Too bad they do not ship anyplace outside of Alberta, Canada. They cannot ship it to even Ontario. A damn shame I say.

A couple of miles of hats on posts… why?

Rural Alberta Canada

The drive to Banff – Rural Alberta Canada

I am so glad to finally not be driving the next few days. I have been on a mission once I finally decided to come up here, driving several hours each day for the past five days just to get to a decision-making point about coming up here or Northern Cali. I am going to stay put and explore around the park for the next three days.

I was thinking today just how fortunate I am to get this opportunity. Not many get to experience some of the things I have, and it just keeps getting better. I have finally been able to relax after the last several months of going through the wringer. All the BS (except for the final papers on the house in CO) is over. It really feels good to be getting de-stressed and enjoying life.

I have also discovered why they call this campground “Mosquito Creek”…it has both.

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